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Full Name: Paul Michael Couto

Position: Rock Engineering Manager at Brentley, Lucas and Associates, Harmony Gold

Date and Place of Birth: 18 May 1987, Johannesburg South

Education: B.Sc. (Honours) Applied Science – Mining Engineering, B.Sc. Geology Degree, and COMREC, COMSCC

First Job: Strata Control Observer at Open House Management Solutions in Klerksdorp

Philosophy in Life: “Never give up because hard work always pays off, perhaps not immedi-ately, but in the long run” and “There is a fine line between arrogance and confidence, don’t confuse the two”

Favourite Food/Drink: Steak, egg and chips

Favourite Sport: Target/ Pistol Shooting, Rugby and Golf


Award Recipient Award Recipient
Candidate Award – October 2016
Highest mark > 81% for SCO
Theory (Metalliferous)
G. Kgaladi Lifetime Achievement Award
Honorary Fellowship
Mr. P. van der Heever
Candidate Award – May 2017
Highest mark > 85% for SCO
Theory (Coal)
S. Masoka Lifetime Achievement Award
Honorary Membership
Non Technical
Mr. E. Wevell
Candidate Award – October 2016
Highest mark > 82% for Paper 1
W. Chinogureyl Salamon Award

Dr. M. du Plessis
Prof. F. Malan

Candidate Award – October 2016
Highest mark > 81% for Paper 3.3
L. Vernooy Ortlepp Award A. Hartzenberg
Candidate Award – May 2017
Highest mark > 85% for SCO
Theory (Metalliferous)
K. Mutamba Best Student Award 2016 –
Strata Control
University of Pretoria
H. Hinrich
Candidate Award – May 2017
Highest mark > 76% for Paper 1
T. Mametja Best Student Award Rock
A. Nchabeleng
Candidate Award – October 2016
Highest mark > 81% for Paper 3.4
E. Hattingh    
Name Country Company Title
Careen Madzore Zimbabwe Anglo American - Unki Impact of footwall fault on grade dilution, and ground stability at Unki Mines
Tonny Kabaso Zambia Metorex-Kinsenda Rock engineering considerations for the mining method at Kinsenda Mine
Tafadzwa Chindedza Zimbabwe Wits/SRK Jointed pillar numerical analysis
Buntu Tati South Africa Impala Pillar design back analysis on 14# Merensky bord & pillar mining
Edeshni Munsamy South Africa Lonmin Support strategies to safely and effectively develop through the Elandsdrift fault zone
Maemu Mariba South Africa Glencore Coal The influence of pillar shape on pillar design and rock strength structural control
Xavier Lottering South Africa Lonmin An investigation into a stress induced large scale hangingwall instability at shallow mining depth on the Merensky Reef
Avhasei Mudau South Africa Wits The sacrificial support concept – an alternative method to enhance safety in rockbursting environments

year end function 2017

rock star party 2017

Dear Members
Please follow the links to the latest quarterly newsletter.


This is your newsletter and I would like to hear from you. If you have any information or stories that we can use, please submit them via email to alida.hartzenberg@lonmin.com

Your feedback will be highly appreciated.

Alida Hartzenberg


I recently completed my third 4th Musketeer, Extreme Character Challenge in the Drakensberg with a bunch of great men. During those 72 hours, more than 220 men were challenged to bridge the 250mm gap between their hearts and their heads. What I took out of this round is different than from the previous two, and that is that every face has a pool of tears, and that every man (and woman) has a story that makes them unique, if we just take time to engage. The larger population grew up believing that personal problems are to be sorted out privately and men in general are ashamed to ask for assistance. “I'm the man, I don't need help! I have this sorted!” We believe that asking for assistance show signs of weakness, allowing others to step on and walk over us.

Good day ISRM Members,

On behalf of the South African Institute of Rock Engineering (SANIRE), we would like to invite you to attend AfriRock 2017, hosted in Cape Town, South Africa. The event will commence on the 30th September 2017 and conclude on the 6th October 2017.

SANIRE has also arranged, in conjunction with the Southern African Institute and Metallurgy (SAIMM), other short courses and tours in order to showcase South Africa and its Mining History. A brief description of the events is included below:

Recent developments:

The European Rock Mechanics Symposium - Eurock 2018 was held in Saint-Petersburg, Russia, from 22-26 May

A new ISRM Suggested Method for Determining Stress–Strain Curves for Rocks under True Triaxial Compression has been approved.

Online lectures:

Two ISRM Online Lectures are available for viewing or downloading on the ISRM website:

17th Online lecture: Prof Charles Fairhurst: Why Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering?

18th Online lecture: Prof Marc Panet: The deformations in the vicinity of the face of a deep tunnel.

ISRM Conferences:

The following ISRM Conferences are scheduled:

Event title Start date End date Country City
AfriRock 2017 – 2017 ISRM International Symposium 2017-10-02 2017-10-07 South Africa Cape Town
3rd Nordic Rock Mechanics Symposium - NRMS 2017 2017-10-11 2017-10-12 Finland Helsinki
Shaoxing lnternational Forum on Rock Mechanics and Engineering Geology - an ISRM Specialised Conference 2017-10-27 2017-10-28 China Shaoxing
1st International Conference on Advances in Rock Mechanics 2018-03-29 2018-03-31 Tunisia Hammamet
EUROCK 2018 - the ISRM European Rock Mechanics Symposium 2018-05-22 2018-05-26 Russia Saint Petersburg
RockDyn-3 - 3rd International Conference on Rock Dynamics and Applications - an ISRM Specialised 2018-06-26 2018-06-27 Norway Trondheim
ARMS10 - the ISRM 10th Asian Rock Mechanics Symposium 2018-10-29 2018-11-03 Singapore Singapore
ISRM 14th International Congress on Rock Mechanics 2019-09-20 2019-09-27 Brazil Foz do Iguaçu